How can the EPA move from a paper to digital workflow?
The EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP) registers pesticides, insecticides and fungicides for safe use in the US and worldwide to protect he nation's food supply and the health of the public.
I led a team of Presidential Innovation Fellows to help OPP move to a digital work environment. We engaged leadership across IT and business. We used a systems thinking and Human Centered Design-driven (HCD) approach to understanding how 600 scientists and regulators worked together, their challenges and opportunities to move to a new way of working.
What we found was a dedicated group of scientists that struggled with information and cultural silos, a lack of key personnel, and an outdated approach to building modern tools to support their work.
- How can increase the federal team capability? A lack of federal team members with experience in modern product management practices, design, technology limit the ability to effectively break down business problems into effective technology solutions
- How can we make the enterprise application architecture less brittle? Staff work with a patchwork of siloed technology systems which makes it hard to determine which data is accurate, collaborate internally or have visiblilty into what is going on across the organization.
- How can we show the way forward? Can involve OPP staff in extended design teams, learning while doing? How do we change belief in how things could be done?